The First Week

Before I get in on the first week of riding, lets do a quick catchup on Scarlet. He’s been doing great. We’ve been keeping the walking up. He definitely isn’t getting as much attention on Tuesday and Thursday as I have limited barn time before I have to go to work but he doesn’t mind as long as he gets his grain and treats. We’ve been doing ~30 seconds of trotting and I haven’t seen any weird leg puffiness like the last time we tried it so I call that a win.

He’s definitely lame at the trot but it’s not soreness lame. He is compensating for the lack of feeling in his right hind. He lifts it extra high in order to compensate for the fact that he has less feeling. Definitely not a great movement but its not so bad most of the time that I worry about him moving faster on it. He really has adapted to it over the last two years. Yes two years. It will be exactly two years since I fell off him on the 14th. Kinda hard to think about.

So now that we’ve checked in on Scarlet, I wanna talk about Cav. Oh man riding multiple days a week makes my body hurt. Obviously its a good thing because I’m building back muscle but I don’t remember my hip flexors being this sore. I need to stretch more.

Cav has been a good boy. I’ve not asked for much as I’ve just been feeling him out. I’ve been trying a few serpentines and circles to get him flexed. He’s tight on the right side and falls through his shoulders quite a bit regardless of the direction we are going. He cannot canter a large circle. It was probably about 30m and he made it between 1/2-3/4 the few times I tried. He’s not used to someone sitting on his back during the canter so I’ve been alternating between half seat and a very light seat while touching his back. He’s not consistent with his leads. Switching directions is hard and I have to ask a few times to get it right. I think I need to start adding in a circle right before the canter while we work on building up strength.

But he’s very good despite his weakness and greenness. He wants to do well. I can feel he’s a little anxious but each time he gets the right answer, he settles in. I think that will go away more as he gets more confidence in what he does. He’s started reaching for the bit more at the walk and trot. Not a lot and we are still working on not leaning or floating but its progress. I’ve worked a bit on the downward transition from the trot to the walk. Just asking him to not dump off on his front end when going to the walk. He’s lightened up a lot on one side and getting better the other direction. I need to do some research and find good exercises to help encourage a horse to do more from his hind end.

I ended up going on a trail walk on Tuesday after we had a huge downpour (for our area) that shut down our arenas. He was completely fresh as it was cold and he was 100% good on the trail. He’s a naturally forward horse so we walked out the entire time but anything spooky he just looked at in an alert manner but never freaked out. I was very impressed with that.

I did get my Pivo and tripod at the end of last week but there was more rain on Friday morning and only one arena was open on Saturday. I didn’t want my tripod to be in the way of everyone so I decided to not try it out. Hopefully I’ll get some video of us riding this week. Not sure if I will try it on one of the weekdays or wait for the weekend so I have more time to fuss around with technical difficulties. We shall see!

4 thoughts on “The First Week

    • It’s definitely my goal. So far I’ve only gotten him to maybe stretch level during the walk and rarely during the trot. But no stretch further. Eventually I’m sure I will get him comfortable with that.

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